Embedded Generosity: Fad or Fundamental?

April 02, 2012 / ORIGINAL THINKING IS HARD

Embedded Generosity: Fad or Fundamental?

April 02, 2012

Shawn Parr Guvner and CEO of Bulldog Drummond

Shawn Parr is the Guvner and CEO of Bulldog Drummond, and Co-founder and CIO of YouSchool. He writes for Fast CompanyPSFK and is a sought-after speaker.

Cause marketing has been proven to boost sales, engagement, and customer loyalty, but are the new models of embedded generosity a passing fad or are they new fundamental standard? One new company is banking on the latter.

Made for Good is a new consortium of like-minded brands that are assembled into one global community, sharing common goals, purpose, and passion. Each Made for Good brand aligns with a non-profit partner and uses embedded generosity to raise money through the sale of its products. A true blurring of commerce and charity, Made for Good leverages the power of retail to make a positive difference through a recurring model of giving. All Made for Good products, which currently include Jedidiah, MusiCares apparel, Beautiful Feet, United Artist Network, and Rain Tees, will carry the Made for Good authenticity badge, which is an official indication the brand has a genuine, integrated give-back component.

A recent study showed that the best way to rack up re-tweets on Twitter was to ignite powerful emotions within your followers. Made for Good is investing in the notion that this concept can be transferred to purchases in stores and online as well. One needs only to read through Jedidiah’s look book, browse the Beautiful Feet website, or watch this MusiCares video to be met with punch-you-in-the-heart inspiration—the type of emotion that breeds loyal and passionate followers.

Tugging on heartstrings and inspiring followers to support you with wreckless abandon doesn’t happen without three key ingredients: time, relationships, and a deeper passion for philanthropy than profits. Like many modern-day innovations, this company and concept was the result of a decade of development. Kevin Murray, one-half of the team behind Made for Good, is the founder of KJM Enterprises, a screen-printing company that works with many well-known national and international brands. Inspired by his brother who had created a network of auto body mechanics that were using their sales to support needs in less fortunate places, Kevin transformed Jedidiah—a surf-inspired men’s and women’s apparel company—into his first embedded generosity brand years ago. With the knowledge that can only come from time and experience under his belt, he teamed up with Krista Treide—whose professional resume touts experiences working with such brands as Nike, UGG Australia, Tommy Bahama, Reebok, Speedo, and Michael Stars—with the goal of leveraging the power of the retail industry to make a positive difference in the world.

There are no shortage of brands who have infused models of embedded generosity into their companies to increase both sales and support for their related causes. The “One for One™” model has been introduced into companies who sell everything from shoes (TOMS) to bed mattresses (IntoBedWeGo) to reading glasses (Warby Parker) and there is a long history of brands like Patagonia who have seen success in embedded generosity models. We’re even seeing major corporations pick up on the trend, such as L’Oreal Paris, who has raised millions to fight ovarian cancer through sales of their Color of Hope cosmetics collection, and SONY, Verizon, Kodak, and other companies who are employing the service of the Glue Network.

Armed with the awareness that the more they grow, the more they give, this is just only beginning for the Made for Good collective. And, I believe, the embedded generosity model will become a fundamental building block of companies. Made for Good is currently looking for more brands that are motivated by their philanthrocapitalistic platform to infuse their model of embedded generosity into as many corporations as possible.

Shawn Parr Guvner and CEO of Bulldog Drummond

Shawn Parr is the Guvner and CEO of Bulldog Drummond, and Co-founder and CIO of YouSchool. He writes for Fast CompanyPSFK and is a sought-after speaker.

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